Review of Newhall Farm Ice Cider, made by Eden Ice Cider in West Charleston Vermont from Newhall Farm apples from Reading Vermont. This is Newhall Farm’s only cider and my first time trying it. However, my previous Eden Ice Cider reviews can be found here. Interesting note – ice ciders can be corked similar to grape wine as they are still (non carbonated).
>>This is a review of a sample bottle provided to Cider Says by Newhall Farm. Although I will take care to treat it the same as any other review, there is always the potential for bias as I received it for free. The only consideration I knowingly made was pushing this up in my cider review cue. I love free stuff, especially cider! Want your cider or cider-related product reviewed here? Contact me.<<
Cider: Ice Cider
Cidery: Newhall Farm (by Eden Ice Cider)
Cidery Location: apples from Reading VT, made in West Charleston VT
Residual Sugar: 13 or 14%
How Supplied: 187ml bottle
Style: American craft ice cider made from organic apples
Availability: CT, ME, NH, NY, and VT, plus they offer sales direct to consumer and through Fine Wine Cellars. 100 cases made.
Cider Description: Defined as the American grape, apple steps up to the 21st century with ice cider bursting onto the American drink scene.
Serve NEWHALL FARM ICE CIDER as a sophisticated alternative to dessert, as an exceptional complement to cheese, spicy foods, charcuterie, or enjoy with cream desserts, good old-fashioned apple pie with ice cream, and as a wedding cake wine extraordinaire.
100% Newhall Farm estate grown apples are concentrated by using natural Northern Vermont winter temperatures. No sugar, coloring, alcohol, or flavorings are added.
Our selective blend of organic heirloom, dessert and wild apples ripples with a fresh crispness and hint of late harvest honey, rounding out spice and acidity to a lingering finish of Vermont’s autumn bounty….Liberty, Empire, Crispin, Honeycrisp, Cortland, mix of heirloom and wild apples.
Cidery Description: Newhall Farm is committed to excellence and produces only the highest quality, natural products while using skilled animal husbandry and fostering responsible stewardship of the land. No growth hormones or fed antibiotics are ever used, and only organic sprays are used in our orchards. Our Vermont heritage products include: ice cider, maple syrup, raw honey, grass fed beef, Berkshire pork, pastured lamb.
Price: n/a, but retails for $20+ for 187ml or $30+ for 375ml
Where Bought: n/a
Where Drank: home
How Found: They sent me an e-mail asking if I’d like a sample bottle. I’d actually heard of them, such as through this post from Cider Culture on Cideries in Winter, and this article from Seven Days VT on Vermont ice ciders, and was excited to try an ice cider which isn’t available in WA.
First Impression: Deep caramel amber. Still (no carbonation). Smells of sweet rich ripe apples, caramel, caramelized sugar, and brown sugar.
Tasting Notes: Sweet to very sweet. Low to moderate acidity & tartness. Hints of tannins. No bitterness or sourness. Notes of caramel, caramelized sugar, brown sugar, honey, vanilla, and hints of spice. Full bodied. Full flavored. Long lingering warm boozy finish. Very apple forward. Low sessionability.
My Opinion: I’m a fan! That said, I’ve only tried 3 ice ciders previously, all from Eden, and liked them all, so I don’t have too much to compare to. Like Eden’s ice ciders, I liked this best very cold. Its quite sweet, but in a refined and well-crafted way, and is traditionally served in a small quantity (such as after dinner), so the sweetness wasn’t overwhelming. Although this is a (very cute) tiny bottle with only about 6 ounces, it lasted a few pours as the serving size is much smaller than traditional ciders.
Most Similar to: Eden Ice Cider Heirloom Blend. I found them overall very similar, down to the profile, flavor notes, body, etc. They mainly varied in the finish, where I found Newhall Farm to be longer, more warming / boozy (it is 2% higher in ABV), and slightly less balanced. It would be really interesting to taste them side by side.
Closing Notes: Very enjoyable. However, we all have our favorites, and so far, Eden Ice Cider Northern Spy (barrel aged) is mine when it comes to ice cider. I look forward to trying more ice ciders. I have a bottle of Frost from Tieton Ciderworks (Yakima WA) in the cabinet (next to the 2 Towns & Finnriver Pommeau, Moonlight Meadery Last Apple cyser, and lots of cider).
Have you tried any ice cider?